Pokémon: Goh Is a Much Better Trainer Than Ash

Goh has been quite the polarizing character since his introduction in Pokémon Journeys. In pursuit of his dream to catch the Legendary Pokémon, Mew, Goh has decided he would also like to catch one of every Pokémon. To his credit, Goh works hard toward his dream by catching Pokémon at an impressively high rate.

Some fans are rubbed the wrong way by how easily he catches most of his Pokémon -- only for them to be immediately transported to Cerise Labs -- but there's one critical difference between Goh's Pokémon storage and Ash's that makes one the superior trainer: Goh actually takes care of all his Pokémon.

Goh cares for his Pokémon in Pokémon Journeys

At the time of writing, Goh has over 100 Pokémon residing at Professor Cerise's lab. The series' original catchphrase was "Gotta Catch 'Em All," and Goh has embodied that mission statement more than Ash ever has. Unlike the games, Goh's excess Pokémon are not converted to data and stored on a computer. Pokémon in the anime are living creatures that need daily care, which would make it cruel for Goh to catch as many as he does just for the sake of his collection. However, the anime has demonstrated on many occasions that when Goh is not on an errand or adventure with Ash, he spends his days caring for each and every one of his Pokémon, which Ash has never done.

Whenever Ash ends his journey around a region and decides to start over, he dumps his newly caught Pokémon at Professor Oak's lab -- Kukui's for his Alolan Pokémon -- and never looks back. In Ash's defense, he can’t exactly care for his many Pokémon while on an adventure, but even when he's in Pallet Town he still doesn't help care for them. Ash has over 60 of his own Pokémon at Oak's lab, yet even when he drops by to say hello, he still doesn't lend a hand to their daily care and give Oak and Tracy Sketchit a break. Ash's Pokémon go months at a time without ever seeing their trainer, while Goh's Pokémon see him nearly every day.

Multiple episodes of the Pokémon Journeys anime are centered around a day of Goh caring for his Pokémon at Cerise Labs. He brings in pallet after pallet of food, brings the meal each of his Pokémon likes to wherever they prefer to hang out, and checks in on their well-being. He noticed when one of his Flabébé was missing a pedal from its flower, and spent time exercising with his gigantic Magikarp to help the bulky Pokémon stay in shape. Meanwhile, Ash's Infernape ran away from Oak's lab to look for new Fire-type opponents, something Ash could have prevented if he bothered to check in and see how his Pokémon are actually doing more often.

Goh feeds his Pokémon in Pokémon Journeys

While it's undebatable that Ash is the more skilled trainer when it comes to battling, Goh is a better trainer in that he actually cares for all of his Pokémon. Responsibility has never been Ash's forte, but Goh is flat out making him look negligent when it comes to actually raising Pokémon. Ash's tunnel vision toward his goal even briefly drove Pikachu to run away from him when Ash couldn't be bothered to do anything but train his Riolu. He tends to keep the same five Pokémon and Pikachu with him for extended periods, while Goh regularly swaps out his Pokémon and brings random assortments of them along on an adventure.

As the World Coronation Series approaches its end in Pokémon Journeys, it's hard to imagine where Ash Ketchum's character could go from here, whether he wins or not. The Journeys anime has felt like a farewell tour of sorts with countless cameos from legacy characters -- and there are several more cameos on the way. If Goh truly is being groomed to take over for Ash as Pokémon's lead protagonist, he's already made a good impression by always being a responsible and caring Pokémon trainer, whereas Ash is often caring but usually irresponsible.

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